Research Scientist

University of Oklahoma

Norman, OK

Job posting number: #7107920 (Ref:if100610)

Posted: August 11, 2022

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

Job Description

The NASA Geostationary Carbon Cycle Observatory (GeoCarb) will record high-resolution, near-infrared spectra of reflected sunlight from geostationary orbit above North and South America, aboard a commercial communications satellite. These data will be analyzed to retrieve spatially-resolved estimates of the atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and carbon monoxide as well as solar induced chlorophyll fluorescence from plants on land. The mission will launch in 2024 and gather data for at least 3 years (

The University of Oklahoma (OU) and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center co-lead the GeoCarb mission during its development phase. The instrument is being built and tested at Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center in Palo Alto, California. The science algorithms and ground data processing system are being developed at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. OU is responsible for GeoCarb mission management after launch, and as such, we are seeking to build the capacity needed for a successful mission, including project management, instrument science and operations. 

We seek up to 3 teamwork-oriented individuals who will perform GeoCarb instrument operations and analyze and troubleshoot mission performance. This will involve training over the next year with Lockheed Martin (onsite and remotely) and operating the instrument during the mission. These individuals will:

  1. Develop and implement plans, products, and procedures to enable the OU team to operate the instrument after launch;
  2. Monitor instrument performance during mission operations and evaluate both the immediate health and safety of the flight unit from data available and long-term trends for growing or hidden problems;
  3. Respond to instrument and ground system anomalies as the first line of defense and start investigations into cause and recovery;
  4. Develop and present ideas and status to stakeholders, such as NASA, during meetings and reviews;
  5. Support the project scientist to ensure that the instrument performance meets the mission needs.

These individuals will train with the instrument team (both onsite in Palo Alto, California, USA and remotely) and support instrument readiness for flight. This will include:

  1. Support of the development and testing efforts of the Lockheed Martin instrument team in order to learn both the instrument and ground system operations;
  2. Support of pre-flight calibration activities;
  3. Support of the verification, through test or analysis, of instrument performance and knowledge requirements;
  4. Regular extended travel for onsite support.

Desired knowledge:

  1. General knowledge of ground system and instrument/payload commanding and telemetry concepts
  2. General knowledge of instrument ground data processing and data analysis
  3. Familiar with spacecraft/instrument operation concept to be able to develop instrument operational plan and process
  4. Experience with scripting and/or programming
  5. Experience with instrument operation
  6. System engineering experience is a plus 
  7. Familiarity with NASA/NOAA spaceflight missions or lifecycle is a plus


  1. Must be a self-starter and able to identify tasks from the overall need
  2. Able to work under tight deadlines and on-the-fly to react to environment

The position will involve regular extended travel to work with the instrument team on site in Palo Alto, California, USA during the first 1-2 years after hire.

The successful candidate will possess a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in physics, engineering, atmospheric science or a related field with strong experience in software coding for data analysis, spectroscopy, and instrumentation. The preferred candidate will possess a Master’s degree in an appropriate field and experience working with optical remote sensing instruments, including procedure development and calibration/validation.

To apply, please submit a CV/resume and the names of three people that can serve as references (with contact information) to Dr. Sean Crowell ([email protected]).  Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.

Applications should be submitted online via Interfolio at:

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More Info

Job posting number:#7107920 (Ref:if100610)
Application Deadline:Open Until Filled
Employer Location:University of Oklahoma
United States
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